By Antonet Go
ZAMBOANGA CITY, (PNA) -– Health officials on Monday established six temporary operating rooms as a preemptive move in case there will be “mass casualties” as the standoff continues in this city.
Four of the six operating rooms are located at the satellite emergency hospital at the Bruno gymnasium in Western Mindanao State University in Barangay Baliwasan, 3.5 kms west of city hall, and at the Mindanao Central Sanitarium in Barangay Pasobolong, 12.80 kms east of city hall.
The sanitarium now has four operating rooms with the establishments of two temporary facilities, according to Zamboanga City Medical Center Chief of Hospital Dr. Romeo Ong.
The Bruno gymnasium has been utilized as satellite emergency hospital since the health officials were forced to close the government-run Zamboanga City Medical Center (ZCMC) as the fighting is just near the hospital.
“This is a precautionary measure. If there is mass casualty at least the facilities are ready,” Ong said.
He added: “This is a preemptive strategic move to prepare out resources.”
Ong said the equipment being used in the temporary operating rooms came from the Davao Regional Hospital.
The facilities will be manned by physicians from the Southern Philippines Medical Center and Northern Mindanao Medical Center.
An additional Intensive Care Unit has also been set up at the Mindanao Central Sanitarium, Ong said.
He said the Surgery and OB-Gyne Departments are also operational at the Mindanao Central Sanitarium.
He said there are 23 patients at the WMSU Gymnasium while more than 40 patients are at the Mindanao Central Sanitarium.
He said there are also around 600 physicians are on standby and ready to assist in attending to the health needs of the residents.
The standoff enters the eight day Monday.
It started last Monday when hundreds of Moro National Liberation Front rebels infiltrated this city.